Head of Technology (Ecommerce)

Posted on: 13th April 2021

Andertons Music Co. are looking for a proven technical leader with a background in retail ecommerce to take up a new role in the company, heading up the technology programme for our online store, which was recently cited as one of the IRUK Top150 Ecommerce retailers. Currently we outsource most of our technology, but we’re looking to build our own in house engineering capability, and need a head of Technology who’s been through this change in a previous role. Whilst the role will initially focus on changing/upgrading our ecommerce tools, over time we’ll look to review the entire suite of technologies used to run the business.

This is a role that will allow you to make your mark on a digital technology portfolio that reaches millions of audience members internationally. Andertons has one of the strongest brand presences in our niche, with over 700,000 YouTube subscribers watching our videos every day. Having been voted Best Music Store in the World in 2018 and the music store with the Best Online Engagement five times in a row since 2016, our much-loved brand has barrels of potential that can be unlocked via good tech!

Andertons is one of the largest Musical Instrument retailers in Europe and currently employs about 150 people. Our current sales come mainly from within the UK & consist of a fairly niche range of physical musical products. We believe that with the right technologies there is a fantastic opportunity to expand the range of products we offer, the locations we sell to, and to grow into the world of digital & subscription sales.

Key Responsibilities

  • Define the Andertons ecommerce technology programme in alignment with business strategy

  • Manage the technology budget and be accountable for delivery of the technology roadmap

  • Technically lead implementation of I.T. & technological solutions which support the ecommerce operation across all business functions e.g. WMS and ERP systems

  • Work closely with the business owners and heads of department to identify technological opportunities and inefficiencies

  • Manage our internal development team and external technology suppliers including our web development agency, ERP agency and I.T. support partners

  • Govern systems architecture and technical team processes and manage risk around our tech

  • Champion best practices, personal development and information security

About You

  • It is essential that you’ll have proven experience as a Head of I.T., Senior Project Manager or Programme Manager within a B2C ecommerce retail environment

  • Background in hands-on software development and people management that will allow you to confidently and authoritatively advise and coach technical team members

  • Stakeholder management experience that will allow you to confidently present technology solutions to non-technical team members

  • Able to balance hands-on input with bigger picture thinking, and understand where solutions should be externalised vs where our internal team adds most value.

  • Looking to step up into a challenging and diverse technology leadership role in a substantial retailer

  • A commercial thinker with proven ability to balance operational risk/requirements with technology innovation

Desirable Experience

  • Previous experience of defining and delivering a technology or digital transformation strategy & roadmap and managing a technology budget is highly desirable

  • Experience of implementing DevOps practices/infrastructure and working with Agile software delivery teams would be a bonus

  • Passion for the products we sell is not essential, but will go a long way!

About Andertons Music Co.

Andertons Music Co. is a medium-sized multichannel retailer with 150 staff, well known as the UK’s best loved Rock ‘n’ Roll musical instrument store! Established over 50 years ago in 1964 and still privately owned and family-run, Andertons offers gear from all the top name brands in guitars, drums, keyboards, and recording equipment – companies like Marshall, Fender, Gibson and Yamaha.

Andertons also has its own fan following via a 715,000+ subscriber YouTube channel that reaches well-over 150 countries. This reach presents the company with a unique opportunity to differentiate and grow within the industry, not just as a retailer but as a brand itself.

Over the last decade, the Andertons Ecommerce & Digital Marketing team has grown to 20+ people including a 6-person web development team containing a web development manager, technical assistant, and three developers. This internal team is evolving quickly to adopt Agile (Scrum) and DevOps working practices. As Head of Technology you will have ownership of the internal team, and a number of external technology partners to help you deliver your vision for the Andertons’ technology landscape.

About Our Technology

You will be joining partway through a fast-paced and exciting digital transformation journey where technology agility is seen as the main way of unlocking the potential of our brand.

Our current tech landscape features a range of specialist software products and back-office systems, some of which are mature and some of which are recently integrated. Notable components include our ecommerce platform (HCL Commerce – formerly IBM Websphere Commerce), Zendesk, and specialised ERP software.

Our initial priority is to “go headless” with andertons.co.uk by building a newly-designed PWA website storefront. We’re using an isomorphic (hybrid server & client-side rendered) React/NodeJS stack, and integrating this with the HCL back end platform.

Simultaneously, the internal development team have just launched a brand new subscription service and loyalty platform called Andertons Extra which composes best of breed SaaS and PaaS technologies to form a sophisticated video-on-demand offering.

These properties are integrated with each other, and with wider systems via an API Management layer, and deployed using Kubernetes on Google Cloud Platform to take advantage of cloud flexibility and scalability.

Once this API-led architecture is fully delivered, the internal team will have more control than ever to make the Andertons website a delightful and exciting ecommerce experience for our many customers, and you will be positioned to start taking advantage of the technology you have built to incorporate best-of-breed technology solutions, changing and scaling technology quickly, with lower risk.

Additional Information

  • Job Location: Andertons Digital Office, Guildford with Work From Home flexibility

  • Kindly note that we will not engage with recruiters over this position at this stage


Extra Information

  • Contract Type: Full Time
  • Working Hours: 9am - 5:30pm Monday to Friday with flexible hours
  • Salary: £60,000 - £80,000 dependent on experience
  • Job Location: Andertons Digital Office, Guildford
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